Two initial puzzle demos for Project Tesla (The Tesla Files)

The original idea of “first person actor” was abandoned for its practicality for a small development team and limited budget. The project then turned to the idea of  a FBI agent’s detective discovery of Nikola Tesla’s life and work.

To demonstrate the possible game mechanics of the game, which are supposed to be related to the Tesla theme, two puzzled demos were created.

The first one is a general acoustic puzzle, which introduces the player to the puzzle mechanics of audio pattern recognition. The player will hear a sequence of electric current sound and three shorter sounds that make up the sequence. The puzzled is solved when the shorter sounds are clicked/tapped in the correct order.


Now, the second puzzle takes the pattern recognition further by introducing the visual patterns.

This puzzle features Tesla’s early and most applied invention, AC motor (three-phase), requiring players to choose three stretch cables from the boxes of AC power sources of different phases and connect them to the corresponding terminals marked “1”, “2” and “3” on the AC motor. Players have two ways of identifying the matches:

1. Acoustic: By moving the mouse to or tap the central gear and the three boxes with curve patterns, players can hear a sequence of electric current sound and three shorter sounds that make up the sequence respectively. This approach has been introduced to the player in the previous puzzle.

2. Visual: Next to the number marks of the terminals there are three coloured curve patterns (representing the wave form) and each of them is a complementary vertical inversion to a curve patterns on the box.

Players can click/tap on a box to choose a cable of AC power source and then click/tap again on a terminal to apply the match. Signal sounds are played to indicate whether the match is right. The puzzle is solved by completing all three matches.


When the puzzle is solved, the player can get some related source information about the puzzle as a reward of the Dossier system. Also, since the AC motor is powered up, it functions to interact with other contraptions and becomes part of the whole room puzzle.


Demos Download:

For Windows:

For Mac OS:


The Original Idea of Project Tesla

What if you were the mysterious genius, master of lightning, Nikola Tesla? What would you do to with your inspirations and talents for inventions? Would you be able to realise Tesla’s dream of world wireless power transmission, death ray and even more…as a different Tesla?

Theme: You as a possible Tesla

Genre: Point-and-click/tap-and-drag (touchscreen) graphic/puzzle adventure, alternative history simulation, RPG

Narrative: A narrator narrates while the player plays in first person perspective; the story is in a chorological order with multiple endings

Core gameplay: The player plays Tesla in his view (with his acute sense of hearing and sight), from his early career on.

  1. Role-playing: Put in the historical scenarios, the player may either follow the indicated path of Tesla or make different choices to alternate the history in critical events such as the decision of charging for his AC generator patent.
  2. Career simulation: The player has to raise and manage funds for invention projects in which the player also need to balance time and energy between work and social activities.
  3. Inventing: The player collect inspirations (represented by graphic symbols) from daily life through puzzles (ref. Myst, Machinarium) and then assembly them in a certain logic way to create a new invention. This process takes time can energy.
  4. Key variables: fund, time and energy